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Links Spring 2012 Edition

The Magazine from The Schools’ Business Partnership

InInthis thisissue: issue:

Treats from the south: Kerry Foods & Wexford Creamery A decade of direction: celebrating 10 years of partnership with Johnson & Johnson Powering Forward with Kirby Group and Coláiste Chiaráin

Welcome “The deep roots never doubt spring will come.” - Marty Rubin

As spring arrives it gives me pause to consider the past and look forward to the future. It was indeed the deep rooted belief of a few business and education leaders a decade ago who optimistically believed in the potential benefits of partnering schools and busnesses in Ireland. Joe Kennedy of the School Completion Programme and Steve Costello, Chair of BITC and Country Manager of M & S in Ireland both embraced this possibility and paved the way for all others coming after them.

Since our last issue of LINKS we have welcomed the following six new companies:

A couple of months ago SBP acknowledged the leadership of Pauric O’ Grady and Pat Coffey whose respective organisations were the first partnership to reach the milestone of 10 years in partnership. You can read about this remarkable link on page 8. They never doubted that spring would come from the deep roots they both sowed in 2001!

I want to wish Jen Fox who has produced this magazine all the best as she pursues a teaching career in the UK with Teach First. Thanks Jen for all your work with us and in particular for producing our newsletter. We welcome Alana Johnston to the team!

SBP is warmly anticipating a great day on April 30th at our annual mentoring celebration event where the Minister for Children & Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald will be our guest presenting our participants with their certificates. Mentoring is a really rewarding programme to consider offering your employees and students! Our Management Excellence for Teachers continues to expand in Ireland and encourage you to view the video clips on page 10 of a recent session on stress management in Limerick. We are hoping to bring this ground breaking initiative to many more schools and companies.


Procter & Gamble in Nenagh (2nd link), Coillte in Sligo, Irish Pride in Wexford, ESB in Cavan/Longford, Glanbia in Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny and Genfitt in Mayo. To date, 179 schools have been matched with business partners and since inception we have set up over 250 partnerships.

Germaine Noonan Programme Manager

Check out our brand new website further information on The Schools’ Business Partnership, please visit

SBP Snaps Contents Contents



Welcome SBP Snaps


SBP BITCI Snaps Member Companies Initiatives EUEducation Reflections


Skills Work Skills @@ Work Abbott Profile with SBP Celebrating 10 years with J&J

Snap Shot!

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88 99

Mentoring Mentoring Management Excellence Teachers 1010 Management Excellence forfor Teachers Diary a SBP coordinators Meet theoflead sponsor M&S 1111 Time to Read Management Excellence for Principals Meet the Partners & Sponsers Diary of a school coordinator

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Front Cover Photos Top Row Left to Right: 1. Minister Richard Bruton in Siemens Diagnostics with students from Fingal CC. 2. Athy International Concentrates & teachers from Athy CC at the launch meeting of the partnership. 3. State Street Global Financial Services & students from O’Connell’s CBS at the company intro session. Middle Row Left to Right: 1. Ryan Tubridy with students from Pres. SS Warrenmount at Diageo careers session. 2. Cardo Production & students from Wexford VS at the company site visit. 3. Cahill May Roberts & students from Palmerstown CC at the company site visit Bottom Row Left to Right: 1. Allergan & students from Carrowbeg College, Westport at the company site visit 2. Ballygowan & students from Desmond College, Newcastlewest, on the company site visit 3. Students from Mercy SS, Goldenbridge at their site visit to Aviva Stadium

Catherine O’Brien, and Claudio Fede from Assurant Solutions, Bishopstown, Cork, interview Lucia Braghiroli from Bishopstown CS.

Fresh from the interview room Catherine O’Brien from Assusrant Solutions, said: “We are delighted to give students from Bishopstown CS an insight into what is expected from them in a professional interview. Interviews are very daunting experiences and unfortunately many school leavers are not equipped with the skills they need to promote themselves to prospective employers. We hope by bringing them through the full interview process and giving feedback afterwards, that we provide them with very practical experience for that first real interview and help boost their confidence.” Lucia enjoyed her interview challenge, “I was really nervous at first but the people from Assurant Solutions were really nice. I was surprised by how interesting the jobs were and how many different career options there are in insurance. They said I did really well and had good things to talk about on my CV. I felt really good afterwards and won’t be nervous the next time I do one. Insurance is definitely something I would consider as a career.” Assurant Solutions is a global provider of specialised insurance and insurance-related products. Its multilingual European Operations Centre of Excellence, Assurant Services Limited, in Cork employs a team of customer care and claims specialists handling accounts across the UK, Ireland, Spain, Germany and Italy.


BITCI EU Reflections Member Companies Sharing the Story of SBP

SBP has been providing support and assistance to any Member States who have been in touch to learn about the Irish experience of partnering schools and businesses. EU Commission SBP participated in the final round table discussion with Portugal, France and the Netherlands on March 1st/2nd recently at the Commission’s Conference on “Reducing Early School Leaving – Efficient and Effective Policies in Europe” that took place in Brussels. The Conference was attended by 350 delegates from all EU Member States and was an in depth look at what is working well across the European Union. Also being showcased was Ireland’s successful School Completion Programme. Czech Update Our Czech colleagues are progressing very well with their SBP initiative on making Science more attractive to students in the Czech Republic. IBM & Bayer are their lead sponsors and many exciting events havetaken place this year. SBP is continuing to provide ongoing support to them. Jiří Kukačka reports: “The Czech Schools’ Business Partnership is progressing well! The links with starter companies are successfully getting closer to the final wrap-up sessions and we are dealing with other companies in order to start new partnerships from September 2012. At the moment we are piloting the new Mentoring Programme and preparing the very first Excellence for Teachers Workshop focussed on Chemistry!”


Students from Patrician College, Finglas hosted 14 EU visitors who were on a Leargas Study visit to Ireland in February.

Hosting EU visitors to Patrician College SBP hosted 14 EU visitors last month who were on a study visit to Ireland on the topic of “Partnership in the Educational Network”. To provide them with a good insight into SBP, we brought them to Patrician College in Finglas partnered for several years with Irish Life & Permanent. The school truly rolled out the RED CARPET! They provided a silver service luncheon to all as part of their Catering module in Transition Year. The group then headed to their fabulous library to see a a Team Building session in action where Ruth Norris and Greg O’ Leary from IL&P were taking them through the important

Patrician College students at a teambuilding challenge

considerations in effective teams. To conclude, Germaine Noonan outlined how SBP works, its programmes and the impacts to date. French Delegation visiting March 27th On March 27th UBIFRANCE Ireland will be welcoming a French delegation of 29 “Chefs de Travaux” (secondary schools teachers and executives) to Dublin in order to present Ireland and in particular to emphasize the country’s success in establishing and fostering partnerships between schools and businesses. SBP will spend time with them outlining the benefits that Ireland has discovered from this collaboration.

Skills @ Work Much More Than Retail Partners

Breda O’Sullivan, SBP Regional coordinator for Dublin, highlights the successful relationship between Musgrave Retail Partners and St. Kevin’s Community College in Clondalkin, Dublin The Musgrave Group’s values statement cites “a commitment to long-term stable relationships, not being greedy, honesty, working hard and achievement”. Reflecting on the continued success of the company’s relationship with St. Kevin’s Community College, Clondalkin, provides a testament to how Musgrave lives these values. The partnership, now in its 8th year, is underpinned by a sincere commitment to support the school staff in providing an opportunity for students to recognise in themselves and further develop the key skills that will ensure their success in school and later in the workplace.

In January 2012, HR Manager, John Mooney and his colleagues, Fiona Bannon and Sharon Keegan arrived in the bright colourful library of St Kevin’s CC to find 25 students from 5th year resplendent in their new school uniforms. The students were eager to learn the secrets that John and his colleagues would surely impart on how to prepare a winning CV and the trick of always landing the job at interview. True to their collaborative ethos, the Musgrave team soon outlined that this session would be a very interactive one, drawing on the knowledge and experience that the students themselves

“We in Musgarve have found the partnerhsip with St. Kevin’s a valuable experience that strengthens year on year”

LEFT: Students from St. Kevin’s discussing the important aspects of prepartion of their CVs and personal interview techmniques.

already possessed. Following a short discussion, the group was split in three, with each group tasked with covering separate elements on preparing the CV, where to look when job-hunting and preparing for interview. Pat Lowry, principal of St Kevin’s Community College, commented on the interaction and enthusiasm of the students as they took on board many helpful hints from the Musgrave team. Sheelagh Norris, programme coordinator added “The Skills at Work Programme allowed the students in St. Kevins C.C. to forge very beneficial links with a local very well-known company. The HR team from Musgraves were very friendly and provided a great presentation on CV preparation and interview skills”. Fiona Bannon from Musgrave reflected on the long-standing partnership, “We have found Business in the Community and our partnership link with St

Kevin’s Community College to be a valuable experience that strengthens year on year. It is a rewarding and effective business experience for the students involved and us here in Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland in Fonthill. I believe it is of particular importance for the students in current times and an opportunity for us to assist them in the challenges they face in their future”. As always, the students were outstanding in their contributions to the session, presenting back on their existing knowledge on the CV & Interview process and reflecting on the wisdom and experience that the Musgrave team shared. Further sessions planned include a ‘Self-Esteem’ workshop, ‘Day in the Life’ and ‘Mock Interviews’ and a site visit to see where it all happens – we can’t wait!


Skills @ Work Powering Forward! A powerful relationship built between Kirby Group and Coláiste Chiaráin, Croom - An account by Eleanor Walsh, Regional Coordinator for Limerick & Clare. It was a glorious sunny spring morning in Co Limerick when four members of staff from Kirby Group arrived in Coláiste Chiaráin, Croom to deliver their Day in the Life session and a company overview. They arrived into the busy foyer of the school where smartly dressed students carried around laptops. They all remarked on how different it was since their own day, but quickly added that they wouldn’t swop back! They began by telling the 5th year students about how Kirby started over 40 years ago as an electrical company and through innovation and vision, had moved into other areas and is now seen as an international multi-disciplinary engineering services solution provider.

“Powering ahead to brighter futures”

The key skill of innovation has contributed enormously to the success of the company. The company has now three offices in Ireland and one in London. Ronan, who is involved in procurement, described his job as a new challenge every day. He’s always looking out for ways of getting quality products for a competitive price, which the students


L-R: Jennifer, Kevin & Helen from Kirby all participated in the ‘day in the life’ sesson

thought might be a bit tricky! Kevin told them that his job involved detailing the specifications of a job tender so attention to detail was extremely important. Jen from Kirby Group described her various roles within the company and how she had gone to college, but was using those college skills in a completely new way now. She was very clear that going to college wasn’t the be all and end all, but doing something you really like is the best thing of all. Her colleague, Helen told them that no matter what they go on to do in life, their main priority is to stick with the Leaving Cert and do the best they can. The minimum requirement to apply for an apprenticeship with Kirby is Leaving Cert with special emphasis on English and Maths. Their current MD was originally an apprentice, which sent a great message to the students about how their career will evolve –

take it steady and do your best with your current studies and explore further work/studies in areas that interest you. The students were really impressed by how upbeat the Kirby employees were and how happy they seemed in their jobs. When two students spoke to me afterwards they remarked that the session had made them realise that there were more options regarding job roles than they had previously realised but first things first...the Leaving Cert. As the four speakers headed for the car park their smiling continued as they laughed about the fact they were a little nervous beforehand. Yes, definitely, 17 year olds can be a tough audience, but the morning’s visit had energized the speakers, teachers and students, powering ahead to brighter futures.

Skills @ Work Perfect Education Initiative

Miriam Kenny, Regional Coordinator for Dublin, reports on the partnership between Loreto College, Crumlin and PEI. Loreto College, Crumlin Road is an all girls’ secondary school of 500 students. The 5th year Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme class along with their teacher, Sheenagh Maxwell are participating in the Skills @ Work Programme this year. The school is partnered with PEI, which is a leading surgical and medical device distributor.

particular interest was the talk given by Katie McGovern who is an ex Loreto Student about her experiences of working in PEI.

Anna Marie McQuillan the Human Resource Manager from PEI started the S@W sessions by giving the students a comprehensive overview of the company and the medical device industry. A number of the students are interested in pursuing careers in healthcare so it was great for them to learn more about medical devices and the technological advances in healthcare.

Shauna Keogh one of the LCVP students commented ‘I think the partnership between our school and PEI has been really beneficial for us all. Seeing

In January the students were transported by bus to the PEI Offices. There was great excitement about the site visit and the students were not disappointed. Staff from different business units within PEI gave an overview of their roles and their career paths to date. Of

The students were also given an opportunity to view and handle samples of the medical devices that PEI supplies e.g. a pacemaker, an artificial knee and hip. A fascinating tour of the warehouse followed and the site visit ended with the students being given a lovely bag of goodies that included a fabulous cupcake with the PEI logo attached (the students were very impressed by PEI’s attention to detail!)

world is really interesting and a great opportunity. I particularly enjoyed the Workshop session delivered by Elaine Rossiter from HR. It was very interactive. PEI’s coordinators this year are Audrey McGivern and Joyce Fairbanks. They along with their colleagues have provided the students with very informative, varied and well prepared interactive sessions. The students too have really engaged in all the sessions and have participated fully. Audrey commented that ‘It has been a joy to be able to pull on our real life experiences and share them with such eager students.

Students from Loreto SS, Crumlin working on their interview skills in groups.


Skills @ Work Treats in the south: Kerry Foods and Wexford Creamery A report by Mary Phelan, originally prepared for the Farmer’s Journal “Entire generations have grown up with working in Kerry Foods Shillelagh” says HR Manager David Mableson. “There’s definitely a different atmosphere here than what you’d find in a business premises located near a city: there’s a sense of belonging.” Kerry Foods employees explained to Bunclody pupils how the company shortlists people for jobs. They advised students on what an employer looks for in a CV and the “Dos” and “Don’ts” of interviews. There was also a focus on a “day in the life” of different roles in the company. “With the current economic climate, they mightn’t have had a summer job, and may feel they don’t have much to offer. However, employers are looking for initiative, eagerness and someone willing to take on responsibility. Students need to think more laterally about the skills they can offer employers, and we can teach them that. There are people working in Kerry Foods whose qualifications range from the Leaving Cert to MBAs.” This is exactly what Jay Murphy, Principal of Bunclody Vocational School values about the company: “Kerry Foods really highlight how you can go onto further education within your job. There are past pupils from our own school working there, so students will see how people worked their way up.


“It’s very exciting for us. Students need as many good role models as possible and these are another group of people exposing students to what is required in the workplace. Kids don’t see teachers as real people – they think we’re trying to get them to learn it for the sake of it! “Kids that don’t flourish in the classroom...99.5% of the time they flourish in the workplace. It will get students thinking, and will help them to make the connection between education and the future employment opportunities that may be available in their local area.

17-year-old Kevin Casey from Kilmore Quay participated in the partnership with Wexford Creamery. “Three people came in from the creamery and gave us mock interviews. They advised us on how to improve our chances of getting a job.

Then we visited the factory and were shown how the cheese is made. Lots of the lads didn’t realise the amount of work that goes into it or how long it takes. The cheese is exported, but milk is sold under shop brand names like Londis. The tillage farmers’ sons were asking about the price of milk – they were suddenly interested in dairy! “ “The machines they use are really interesting. They need specific mechanics for the lorries - I had never thought of that, and some of the lads are definitely interested in mechanics after what they saw. Some of my classmates were interested in a career in a place like Wexford Creamery. Even for those not interested in working somewhere like that, they still got experience for any job. It gives you an idea of what it’s like to be working. “I have my own connections with the Creamery. My Grandad was one of the first people to work on it when it was being constructed, and my uncle drove a lorry for them for years!

10Skills years with J&J @ Work 10 years of Golden Partnership – Johnson & Johnson and Tallaght CS

In December last Johnson & Johnson and their partner Tallaght Community School were the first Schools’ Business Partnership link to reach the milestone of 10 years in partnership. To mark the occasion SBP hosted a luncheon to celebrate the achievement. In attendance were the original champions in both organizations: Pat Coffey, Principal of TCS and Pauric O’ Grady the then MD of J & J Medical. It was their commitment, passion and vision that led them to anticipate what could happen if they set up a partnership. They were joined by Eunan Friel, former MD also of J & J; Kieran McGowan, Chairman of BITCI; Tina Roche, CEO, BITCI; teachers Maeve Clarke and Niall McDonagh, Vicki O’ Reilly, J & J; Fedelma O’ Farrell and Germaine Noonan, SBP. Pauric O’ Grady recounts here why he took this significant first step to set up the partnership: “Johnson & Johnson has a long history in Tallaght. As MD, I had always identified strongly with the company’s value system which places a strong emphasis on engaging with and being an asset to the community in which we are located. I believed passionately that this commitment to the community was more an investment in sustainability than any obligation for philanthropy or good citizenship. Linking with TCS provided an excellent opportunity for the J&J team to connect with students, some of whom would become future employees and the teachers who were developing their potential.

With the benefit of hindsight, there is no question whatever but that J&J has harvested at least as much benefit from the linkage as TCS. On a personal note, the linkage has yielded a lasting friendship with Pat Coffey who was Principal at TCS.” The current school coordinator since 2006 of the Skills @ Work Programme in TCS is Maeve Clarke, the Business Studies teacher. Maeve has witnessed first hand the benefits and impacts of the S@W programme and the mentoring programme both of which have been delivered by the employees from J & J. Maeve outlines: “Our school has been fortunate to have forged a strong link with J & J for over ten years now. The benefit to the students has proved immeasurable. The student’s ability to converse with adults has improved. They have become focussed and have set themselves goals, all through the help of their J & J mentors. Students have many memories of school life but I am certain the Partnership will be one of their standout memories”

Photos LEFT: Eunan Friel fomer MD, J & J & Pat Coffey, Principal Photo RIGHT: Maeve Clarke and Niall McDonagh of Tallaght CS Photo BELOW: Tina Roche, Pauric O’ Grady and Kieran McGowan – Board of BITCI at the luncheon to celebrate 10 years in partnership with J & J.


Mentoring Mentoring Marino College Dublin - Investec Investec have been involved in mentoring students from Marino College for the last four years. It was a step into the unknown for both company and school and has been really successful. The mentors have been exceptional in their interest and work with the students and have a great understanding of the students. Jim Martin, Principal of Marino College, ‘ the link with Investec has been tremendously beneficial to the students and Marino College is very grateful for the generosity of the staff of Investec for sharing their knowledge and skills with the students.

This year’s students from Marino College, Dublin.

Students from Marino College from the first mentor group in 2008

The students who have been involved in the Mentoring programme have grown in confidence and maturity and have experienced so much that would not norally experienced without their visits to their mentors ‘The students themselves have really enjoyed their visits, its given them an insight into the world of work and all have expressed how they feel their confidence has grown and how much they enjoy their ‘chats’ with their Mentors. It is great to have help with their tasks and research on courses, with CV’s and practicing for interviews.’ The school and students said they would highly recommend Mentoring to the students coming behind them. Marino College isn’t the only school involved in the mentoring programme, there are 18 different progarmmes currently in prgress across Ireland. The students from Pobalscoil Rosmini in Drumcondra are in the first year of their mentoring programme. Their mentors are employees of ESB. The partnership is growing ever stronger and both school and company are looking to the future with excitement. Students from Pobalscoil Rosmini and their mentors from ESB at their recent launch.


Management Excellence for Teachers


Management Excellence for Teachers Schedule 2011 - 2012 Following a successful pilot in 2009 / 2010, The Schools’ Business Partnership has now introduced Management Excellence for Teachers in 30 schools throughout Ireland in 2011/2012. Below are the sessions that have taken place since last September.





Meet the... Excellence Management for Teachers


A feature on the Schools’ Business Back in 2000, Joe Kennedy who was one of the national coordinators who had just commenced leading the School Completion Programme to assist schools with high drop out levels invited Steve Costello, Country Manager at the time for Marks & Spencer Ireland to a meeting to see if businesses in Ireland could work and support these targeted schools and their students. Out of that conversation and invitation was born the Schools’ Business Partnership. Not surprisingly Steve who was also the Chair of BITCI at that time rose to the challenge spectacularly and announced that M & S would be the lead sponsor for the next 3 years and that he would endeavor to inspire and motivate other companies to join this new initiative.

Larkin CC St. Columba’s Stranorlar Killarney CC Clonmel VS St. Patrick’s College, Cork Phobail Mhic Dara, Carna

Good leadership was key and with Joe and Steve so committed and supportive the rest as we know is history! 125 companies; over 250 partnerships; over 20, 000 students impacted; 6 programmes, 256 work placements, and the list goes on. M & S have 6 partnerships established themselves in Ireland:


Jonathan Smith former Country Manager for M & S in Ireland (now in European Role) & Tina Roche, CEO, BITCI at BITCI event in Aviva Stadium.

Meet the... Time to Read

Sponsor Partnership proud lead Sponsor Marks and Spencer Ireland

M&S Mary Street, Dublin M&S Letterkenny M&S Killarney M&S Clonmel M&S in Cork city M&S in Galway City

In the centre - Martin Carpenter Store Manager, M & S, Mary St. Dublin with mentee students at recent annual Mentoring Celebration and joined by Michael O’Brien, Chairman, Cornmarket

Marks & Spencer have been an exemplary company and partner. Their commitment to leading on educational inclusion in Ireland is to be applauded by us all. They ‘walk the talk’ in a most quiet way and the Schools’ Business Partnership has been very proud to be associated for such a long time with this leading retail employer. We recently asked Jonathan Smith who was Country Manager in Ireland for the past 3 years and now heads up their operations in Prague and Eastern Europe to tell us why M & S consider the sponsorship of Ireland’s Schools’ Business Partnership is a good thing to do. He told us:

“Marks and Spencer Ireland recognise the need to deliver a corporate social responsibility agenda to ensure that we help the local communities in which we trade to develop for the future success of the country. The school partnerships allow us

to engage with young impressionable students to ensure that their business education is developed at an early stage to ensure they value and understand how important businesses are to their local communities. It’s always a pleasure to sponsor the excellent work that BITC do to help build these important partnerships for the future business generation.” It takes great companies to do great things and

M & S is at the top of the pile of great companies. Sincere thanks to M & S and their current Country Manager Jonathan Glenister & to their 4000 employees from the students of Ireland, their families and their schools! We look forward to continuing to develop and expand our work with M & S - our most valued lead sponsor.


Management Excellence for Principals Management Excellence for Principals Schedule 2011-2012 Dublin Principals Topic Leadership Performance Mgmt

DATE Wed Nov 9th Wed Dec 7th

COMPANY Intel Cornmarket

Time Mgmt

Friday Feb 3rd


PJ Ferris, HR Business Partner





Leadership Performance Mgmt Time Mgmt

Tues Dec 13th April Wed Jan 25th

PEI Britvic Cornmarket

SPEAKER Jonathan Walsh, MD, Intel Shannon Rachel Hyland, Learning & Development Specialist

Dublin Deputy Principals

Robert Keily, MD Justin Kinnear, L & D Manager Rachel Hyland, Learning & Development Specialist

Donegal Deputy Principals Topic Leadership Performance Mgmt Time Mgmt

DATE Wed Feb 1st Thurs March 8th Fri Dec 2nd

COMPANY LYIT Pramerica Primecore

SPEAKER Paul Hannigan, President Mary Howick, HR Director Dave Mc Mullan, Consultant





Leadership Performance Mgmt Time Mgmt

Tues Dec 6h April Wed Feb 8th

Tallaght Hospital Britvic Cornmarket

Midlands Principals

Laoise O’Murchu, Comms & Public Relations Mgr. Justin Kinnear, L & D Manager Rachel Hyland, Learning & Development Specialist

Carlow/KilkennyTopic Topic Leadership Performance Mgmt Time Mgmt

DATE Wed Feb 22nd Wed Nov 16th Thurs Jan 19th

COMPANY State Street Int’l Cornmarket Coillte

SPEAKER William Slattery, CEO Rachel Hyland, Learning & Development Specialist PJ Ferris, HR Business Partner

Photos above: Right: Mr Willam Slattery, CEO of State Street Global financial services delivering a seminar on ‘leadership’ as part of the 2011-2012 Management Excellence for Principal series. Left: Carlow and Kilkenny Principals at a recent Management Excellence for Principals seminar.


Diary of... Diary of a School Coordinator Brendan Keenan from CBS Synge Street reports on the greastest impact of the Schools’ Business Partnership on his students

The Schools’ Business Partnership and CBS Synge Street, Dublin 8 “Synger” and the National Irish Bank: 10 interesting years NIB has been a huge support to many of our students over the last ten years. The volunteers have given generously of their time, experience, skills and good humour. Their professionalism has constantly shone through. In return our students have benefitted greatly. They have learned to interact with ‘real’ business people. They have learned the importance of preparing an attentiongrabbing cover letter and CV, as well as the requirement to study the person specification and job description carefully. This has greatly complemented our own career guidance initiatives. Most of all, because of the warmth and friendliness of the volunteers, our students were able to overcome their natural anxiety and excel in the interview process. From the feedback, most learned that they had valuable skills and aptitudes which would be useful to an employer. By being encouraged to talk in a friendly atmosphere, they realised that they could discuss their hobbies, interests and achievements. To sum up, the greatest impact has been the growth in confidence of the students due to the very positive nature of the whole experience of our involvement with the Schools’ Business Partnership. Brendan Keenan Deputy Principal Business Teacher


The Schools’ Business Partnership Adding value to the Department of Education & Skills 'School Completion Programme' The Schools’ Business Partnership aims to positively impact on educational inclusion and address key issues in areas of educational inclusion in Ireland. The programme does this by matching one school with a large local business and engaging in various programmes. The number of schools currently matched nationally is 179. Through the Schools' Business Partnership a menu of programmes has been developed to address key educational issues for these schools across the country. Marks & Spencer Ireland have been the lead sponsor of the Schools' Business Partnership since its inception - a remarkable commitment.

Lead Sponsor

Integra Life Sciences is linked with Tullamore College

Supported By


Find Business in the Community Ireland on:


The Schools’ Business Partnership Business in the Community Ireland 32 Lower O’ Connell Street | Dublin 1 01 8743809 |

Schools' Business Partnership  

Links Spring Edition

Schools' Business Partnership  

Links Spring Edition